I impulsively bought a kayak...any good?

-- Last Updated: Mar-12-13 2:09 AM EST --

Hey guys,
Brand new to the forum. Sorry this is my first post.

Well, i'm usually not one to dive into things without tons of research, but I guess I was feeling fiesty (and a bit buzzed... :p ) and I bought a kayak. I'm a college student and it was cheap so I just went for it with no kayaking experience, etc.

Anyways, I can't find any information on the kayak. It has no brand/model ID on it, and only has "moosehead lager" stickers on it. I'm guessing it was some sort of promotional item at one point in time. Iv'e used to HIN to find out it was made by Paluski boats in Canada, and it was made in 2004. Iv'e looked at all their models and it doesn't look like any of their current offerings, maybe similar to the "expedition" model (http://www.paluski.com/expedition_pr.html). It is 13' long. Anyone know anything about it?
Here's a picture.


I'd like to do some fishing from it, and just general recreational ocean paddling. Do you think this is something I will enjoy and that will fit my needs? I paid $150 for it with a paddle, so my logic at the time was that if I found out later I didn't want it or wanted something else, I would just sell it for more and profit :evil:

Thanks guys! Any advice is appreciated.

well, any kayak that comes
with surround sound can’t be all bad…

It looks like my old white water boat
It won’t be much fun in the ocean or for fishing.

It will take too many correction strokes and leans to keep straight.

I doubt if you’ll get much more than you paid for it

jack L

Paluski Spirit?

– Last Updated: Mar-12-13 7:50 AM EST –

Looks to me as if it might be an older version of their Spirit, lacking the bow deck rigging. Your photo shows what appears to be a control cable running down the starboard side for a retractable skeg. If so, does it work?

I wouldn't start my kayaking experience on the open ocean, but my guess is it will suit you pretty well.

If you fit in it, you did fine.
The price was certainly right.

whitewater boat?
You are dating yourself, Jack.

Not since the Perception Mirage have whitewater K1s been 13 feet long.

If you plan to take that kayak on the ocean:

  1. Buy yourself a good pfd.
  2. Buy a spray skirt for the kayak.
  3. Don’t paddle on the ocean alone.
  4. If you ignore 1, 2, and 3; I wish you luck.


Hard to go wrong for 150 bucks. Dont forget a PFD (life Jacket). Dont go way out into open water as that kayak will sink if it tips over as there doesnt appear to be any sealed hatches. You could ad some float bags if you wanted too.But for rec kayaking it doesnt look to bad for your first kayak. You did mention Ocean, better to stick smaller water were you could easily swim to shore and dump water out of kayak. Not sure wear your located but in cold climates spring is most dangerous time as air temps get warm but water temps very cold. Killer combo if dressed in shorts and a t-shir which most rec kayakers do.

Mine was a Corsica S
Shortly after crossing the Delaware with Washington !

Jack L

good price
Your assumption about price is good. So long as it is a working boat (no holes and such), you should be able to resell it for at least as much as what you paid should you decide to upgrade.

Your boat does not appear to have a bulkhead (a wall) inside the kayak). Are there any air bags? If it doesn’t have either, then one risk with that boat will be if you flip, it will fill with water and at worst, sink; at best, float but be so low in the water that you will not be able to re-enter the boat while in the water. This is a safety concern.

One way to reduce this would be to buy float bags and install them (they should be tied off inside the boat, otherwise they have a habit of just floating out of a flooded boat). The other solution is to be very conservative about where you paddle - always paddle within swimming distance of shore (and keep in mind, if the water is cold, you can’t swim far).

time will tell
Only getting it onto the water will determine if it is indeed a reasonable kayak or a kayak-shaped-promotional-object. I tend to be skeptical of items bearing advertising logos. As others have brought up, a major concern is the lack of sealed bulkheads. What does the long cable running along and then under the deck connect to? If there is some sort of functioning skeg you are a step ahead of the game. You don’t mention your physical size, which will affect performance. It looks like a rather deep boat. Does it have foot pegs inside? What is the seat like? A shot of the bottom of the hull would suggest a little more about its performance potential and whether it tracks straight or tends to wander a bit. If it has a round bottom it could also be tricky to keep it upright.

You can hardly lose for that price (though the paddle that came with it is most likely a dud – what can you tell us about that?)

At any rate, it doesn’t look like a boat I would use in the ocean. Stick to small lakes and slow rivers for the time being and go out with other people until you are comfortable in it. And don’t take it out without some float bags unless the water you are in is shallow and warm enough to stand in.


– Last Updated: Mar-12-13 2:34 PM EST –

Thanks for all the information guys!

I'm at school right now, but i'll get another picture of the bottom, seat area, and paddle when I get home. Oh, and i'm about 5'9" 170lb.

I already have a life jacket and a throwable, so i'll keep that inside it too. I don't plan on going out into open water (or at least not yet) but rather sticking to the bays.

Would you spend $75 on lessons ?

– Last Updated: Mar-12-13 2:57 PM EST –

You got a cheap kayak, that's great, awesome, wonderful.

What $$ value would you spend on a kayak lesson ?
Consider it ocean college class 101 intro with
a real world lab addendum tacked on

If you bought a real sea kayak for $1,500 for ocean use,
would $75 still seem high for a kayak lesson ?

We have no idea of your knowledge of the ocean, tides,
rip currents, surf zone, rock gardens, etc., etc.
Perhaps you surf, boogie board, sail, scuba....

It is just that, a question, of safety.

more pics

– Last Updated: Mar-12-13 3:10 PM EST –

Here are some more pics including the paddle :)





I’d say my knowledge of the ocean is fairly good.

I’m a freediver and go on a weekly basis, and iv’e surfed for about 5 years now. So, I enjoy the ocean :slight_smile:

And I see some more…
…free diving in your future if that thing flips as I’m guessing there aren’t bow and stern bulkheads :slight_smile:

Good luck with that thing.

Certainly looks like a Spirit
I would say that the hull configuration certainly looks like the picture of the blue Paluski Spirit kayak shown on this webpage: http://www.latornell.ca/dream.html

And indeed it does have a retractable skeg which is in the retracted position in your photo. The control cable running down the starboard side of the boat hopefully deploys the skeg. See if there is a sliding mechanism or lever that lowers the skeg.

The skeg will help the boat track better on flat water and maintain its course better in a side wind or quartering wind. If the skeg is spring loaded (retracts upward against spring pressure when deployed if it strikes an obstacle) so much the better. If not, remember to retract it in the shallows or when landing so as not to break it.

Harmony paddles are serviceable and very tough. Should certainly serve to get you started.

You can still sink in bays

– Last Updated: Mar-12-13 4:00 PM EST –

Bays of the ocean will still have tide, wind and waves. Which this boat is not equipped to handle. If you do want to try salt, don't get any further than you can swim in. This boat is set up to be a home for lobsters if you capsize.

That said, it is hard not to have fun with something that floats and comes cheap. Just don't expect it to remotely be a sea kayak. Or you to be a sea kayaker because you are in it and the water tastes like salt. :-)

Flip my Kayak
You just need a good pitchman and a willing tv network!

I thought I saw you there!